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Old 01-19-2022, 08:57 PM   #1
CentralTXHunter
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Default Letís Restore a Shotgun

So my Nana passed away back in October. Weíve been methodically cleaning out her house in Big Spring the past several months. Big Spring is 5 hours away for my sister, mom, and myself so the process has been slow. While cleaning out her garage back in December I found a Iver Johnson Champion single shot 16 gauge. It was in a storage cabinet behind a bunch of junk and laying next to a Winchester Model 67 .22 Short. They might not have moved in 40 years. Serial ďnumberĒ is BHBB. There arenít accurate records for these guns but that dates it to between 1939 and 1957 and most likely was my great grandfathers. Theyíre not worth much money at all, but I have decided to restore them so that we can pass them down and use them. Iíve never done this before, but letís see how it goes. Iíd love to knock down a few dove in September with this thing.

It was in pretty rough shape. This is what Iím starting with.








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Old 01-19-2022, 09:01 PM   #2
diamond10x
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That’ll be fun! It doesn’t seem to be in too bad of shape by the pics.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:01 PM   #3
Walker
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Doesn't look too bad. Sounds like a worthy project.
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:03 PM   #4
CentralTXHunter
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I was able to get the action open (it was pretty froze up) and get it disassembled.



I then ran all the metal parts through a couple of cycles of my Sonic cleaner.



Pieces came out much cleaner as expected.



Tomorrow my plan is to take some 0000 steel wool and oil to these metal parts to remove a lot of surface rust that is still present. Then weíll strip the finish off the wood back down to bare wood, stain it, and then give it a good coat of linseed oil. Hopefully Iíll have a functioning, restored shotgun by Sunday. Iíll update along the way as I complete steps the rest of this week.


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Old 01-19-2022, 10:04 PM   #5
bowtecmike
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In! Love these threads


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Old 01-19-2022, 10:07 PM   #6
fish4food
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Great progress! Cleaned up real nice!
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Old 01-19-2022, 10:14 PM   #7
SmTx
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Oh man, please just clean it and not "restore it!!!"
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Old 01-19-2022, 11:52 PM   #8
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How hot does your sonic cleaner get? Consider boiling or steaming the parts and then using steel wool to remove the rust it brings out. Works great


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Old 01-20-2022, 03:49 AM   #9
Louis
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Great lookin old gun. I have one in 12 GA with 30 in full choke. Has ivory beads for sights. Has over johnson gun and bicycle works stamped on it. As stated by SmTx just clean it and don't restore it.
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Old 01-20-2022, 04:18 AM   #10
Big Lee
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What a cool find!! I have a weird addiction to old Single shot shotguns. No idea why.
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Old 01-20-2022, 06:53 AM   #11
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmTx View Post
Oh man, please just clean it and not "restore it!!!"

I understand this sentiment. If it was in great condition, itís maybe a $200 shotgun. Iím removing the rust from the metal parts to preserve it, but have no intention of destroying the patina. As far as the stock, it didnít show in pictures, but thereís multiple colors of paint on the stock. Iím going to strip it to bare wood and stain. Iím not going to sand the nicks or imperfections out of it. I want it to keep the character, but look like it had been cared for the last half century.


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Old 01-20-2022, 06:55 AM   #12
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QuackHunter View Post
How hot does your sonic cleaner get? Consider boiling or steaming the parts and then using steel wool to remove the rust it brings out. Works great


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I ran the sonic cleaner without heat at the suggestion of my local gunsmith buddy. The dry west Texas weather is the reason this gun isnít crumbling apart.


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Old 01-20-2022, 07:34 AM   #13
TxHamJello
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In for progress and finished product! Fun project!
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Old 01-20-2022, 12:21 PM   #14
TacticalCowboy
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Looks good!
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Old 01-20-2022, 12:36 PM   #15
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Be gentle with the steel wool on that case hardened receiver
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Old 01-20-2022, 01:42 PM   #16
CentralTXHunter
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So I had a little time today between clients. I hit the metal parts with a little oil and steel wool. I made sure I used a very light touch and let the wool work on the rust without harming the finish. Everything cleaned up pretty nicely. The barrel has some areas where the bluing has gone and thereís some minor pitting, but overall Iím happy with how this part has turned out so far. My only regret is not taking before pictures of each piece.











Probably all that Iíll get to today. Plan is to strip the wood tomorrow evening. Stain and linseed Saturday. Then reassemble Sunday. If I could find a box of dang 16 gauge lead shot, it shoot it too, lol. Iíve got a couple feelers out for that so weíll see what comes of it.


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Old 01-20-2022, 01:47 PM   #17
kruppa24
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In, looking good so far
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Old 01-20-2022, 03:08 PM   #18
Leverhunter
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Looking good. Nice project.
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Old 01-20-2022, 03:52 PM   #19
SmTx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CentralTXHunter View Post
I understand this sentiment. If it was in great condition, itís maybe a $200 shotgun. Iím removing the rust from the metal parts to preserve it, but have no intention of destroying the patina. As far as the stock, it didnít show in pictures, but thereís multiple colors of paint on the stock. Iím going to strip it to bare wood and stain. Iím not going to sand the nicks or imperfections out of it. I want it to keep the character, but look like it had been cared for the last half century.


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Ah, understood. Looking good so far
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Old 01-20-2022, 04:05 PM   #20
saintsfan
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Looks great!
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Old 01-20-2022, 04:20 PM   #21
Drycreek3189
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After you strip the stock, you may find you don’t need to stain it. Back in the day American walnut was cheap and plentiful, and very few guns had beech or birch stocks that had to be stained. Hopefully you’ll just turn up some pretty walnut although it won’t be fancy. You’ve made a good start !
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Old 01-20-2022, 04:32 PM   #22
Hardware
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Tagged!
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Old 01-20-2022, 04:38 PM   #23
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drycreek3189 View Post
After you strip the stock, you may find you donít need to stain it. Back in the day American walnut was cheap and plentiful, and very few guns had beech or birch stocks that had to be stained. Hopefully youíll just turn up some pretty walnut although it wonít be fancy. Youíve made a good start !

That would be ideal. Iím prepared either way. Weíll know after stripping tomorrow.


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Old 01-20-2022, 04:44 PM   #24
mikebyrge
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Looks great!

I think that wood will be good without any stain - just some Tru oil and it should look nice.

Restoring/refinishing guns is one of my hobbies and I always use CitriStrip and Scotch Brite pad to remove the old finish followed by light sanding.

Some cold blue on the spots with bare metal will make it look better and offer some protection.
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Old 01-21-2022, 05:46 PM   #25
CentralTXHunter
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Started stripping the finish this evening. This is the stripper Iím using.



Couple of before pics.




Applied the stripper and wrapped in Saran Wrap. Iíll check on it periodically this evening, but it may need to sit overnight.




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Old 01-21-2022, 10:43 PM   #26
3ChordTruth
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Looking good, a very nice project, thanks for the detailed pics.
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Old 01-22-2022, 02:27 AM   #27
Chase4556
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Looks great! Can’t wait to see the finished product.
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Old 01-22-2022, 08:03 AM   #28
CentralTXHunter
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Well, this project is going to take longer than expected. This weather isnít exactly ideal woodworking weather. Iím also using a very mild stripper. It took of a good initial layer off by this morning, but I can still see some of the paint on the stock and we are nowhere near bare wood yet. I reapplied stripper and weíll check on it this afternoon.


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Old 01-22-2022, 10:38 AM   #29
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Looking great
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Old 01-22-2022, 10:54 AM   #30
Drycreek3189
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CentralTXHunter View Post
Well, this project is going to take longer than expected. This weather isnít exactly ideal woodworking weather. Iím also using a very mild stripper. It took of a good initial layer off by this morning, but I can still see some of the paint on the stock and we are nowhere near bare wood yet. I reapplied stripper and weíll check on it this afternoon.


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When it comes to restoration, slow is good.
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Old 01-22-2022, 11:10 PM   #31
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Looking good so far!
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Old 01-23-2022, 08:15 AM   #32
CentralTXHunter
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Got the wood all stripped. Doesnít look like stain is going to be needed as we have a beautiful piece of wood to start with. Iíll apply the first coat of linseed oil after church. Iíll probably do 3-4 coats, so we should be able to put the gun back together by the end of the week.




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Old 01-23-2022, 08:50 AM   #33
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Great looking wood. Nice job on the stripping.
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Old 01-23-2022, 09:00 AM   #34
Sahelian Jeep
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That’s looking good
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Old 01-23-2022, 10:09 AM   #35
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What u gonna do with that wooden Texas flag? I like that.
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Old 01-23-2022, 10:47 AM   #36
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chew View Post
What u gonna do with that wooden Texas flag? I like that.

Those are cornhole boards I built a year or two ago. Thereís a thread here about it somewhere.




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Old 01-23-2022, 10:51 AM   #37
CentralTXHunter
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Got the first coat of linseed oil on the wood. Took it out into the sun to get a better pic. Really happy with it so far.



Rinse and repeat this a few times over the next few days, get it some drying time and weíll put this bad boy back together.


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Old 01-23-2022, 11:24 AM   #38
Fajkus7
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It’s coming together really nicely
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Old 01-23-2022, 11:52 AM   #39
Drycreek3189
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I thought there would be some pretty walnut under that varnish. Not fancy, but attractive nevertheless.
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Old 01-23-2022, 12:21 PM   #40
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drycreek3189 View Post
I thought there would be some pretty walnut under that varnish. Not fancy, but attractive nevertheless.

Yeah, you were right and I was thoroughly surprised. Itís not ďhigh gradeĒ by any means, but itís pretty. Doesnít show in the pics, but all the nicks in the wood from the 70-80 years itís been around were kept. I purposely did not sand/iron those imperfections out. I wanted it preserved for future use, but to appreciate the past.


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Old 01-24-2022, 02:09 PM   #41
Nash Thornton
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Motivating, I got a few rusty ones laying around.
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Old 01-24-2022, 02:23 PM   #42
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Super cool man.
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Old 01-24-2022, 09:53 PM   #43
3ChordTruth
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Really nice wood color, full sun shows it off well.
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Old 01-26-2022, 06:04 PM   #44
Big Lee
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Looking great! I hope you take this gun on a well deserved hunt!
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Old 01-26-2022, 06:45 PM   #45
CentralTXHunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Lee View Post
Looking great! I hope you take this gun on a well deserved hunt!

Thanks! I would love to kill a few dove a year with it at least. Iím not much for ďsafe queensĒ. Put the 4th coat of linseed oil on today. Iíll let it cure for a couple of days and put it all back together on Friday/Saturday.


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Old 01-28-2022, 12:19 PM   #46
CentralTXHunter
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Got it put back together today. Really happy with how it turned out. Sheís ready to shoot some birds again. Iíll start doing the Winchester .22 soon and most likely do the exact same thing. Thanks for following along!










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Old 01-28-2022, 12:29 PM   #47
Chase4556
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Looks awesome! Great job.
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Old 01-28-2022, 12:40 PM   #48
bowmansdad
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That turned out great! I need to try this on my dads old Remington 12 gauge.
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Old 01-28-2022, 12:59 PM   #49
TacticalCowboy
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Great work!
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Old 01-28-2022, 01:11 PM   #50
kruppa24
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nice work! like button
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